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My name is Yann, I m French so please excuse my  english ..I ll do my best.

I smoke chicken since 2 years already but was using a handmade Caribbean island type of is my instagram catering account  :

Now that I m opening a company dedicated into smoked food I bought a SM160 to be able to : Fit hygiene laws , cook better and faster.

I m going to explain my process to try to get the best answer from you guys.

I marinade my chicken for 6 to 12hours.

Before putting a big load I made several test cooking just 2 chicken legs at a time ... i got a good result when on timer mode having smoke time to 1h30 at 180F and cook time to 230F for another hour

Now when I put 20kilos in one load, temperature doesn't comes higher than 150F

An oven Electrician specialist alreday came to check my set up and all is good. The oven is directly pluged to up to 20Amp plug delivering 220V.

The probe inside the oven is clean

The Oven is standing outside and it s 6 degrees outside at its lowest but I already tested a big load of meet this summer when it was 30 degrees outside and the issue was already there. 

I called my contact at cookshack and he told me I was not in need to pre heat the smoker but If i don t do it, my oven temperature won't get higher than 140F with a 20kiloos oe even a 5kg load of chicken legs.

I m a bit hopeless right now, since it s really killing all my cooking plans for the end of the year and need to solve this issue asap. The maximum I can cook right now is five kilos and it  takes 4hours while I want  and need to cook 20kg at once at least 3 times a day.

I read something about moist heat coming from the meat blocking the smoker to come to the right temperature but can t  find the topic again. could it be the issue?

 I m making a test as I write I started the SM160 an hour ago it was at 47F it takes on hour to get to 115F.

I guess the outside temperature affect the heating up process and  would like to understand to which extend.

Also what about humidity coming from the meat and what roles it plays on teh heating up process?

Thanks in advances for your tips and tricks

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The CS specification on the SM160 says it can do 20 whole chickens at one time. So if you assume about 2 kg per chicken, that is 40 kg of chicken at one time. So it seems that the SM 160 should easily do 20kg of chicken. Your lowest outside temperature of 6 C (about 43 F) should not be a problem.

The only suggestion I have is to make sure your product is dry of marinade before you place it in the smoker. Much of the smoker heat will go to evaporating the marinade before the smoker temperature will get high enough. I hope this helps. Good luck.

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